How to Clean Blinds

Window blinds held by hand with cotton glove for cleaning

The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

Project Overview
  • Total Time: 15 - 30 mins
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $5

Are you looking for a quick and easy way to clean your blinds? Forgo the special cleaning tools and use this cheap trick instead. Yes, you could buy a lambswool duster, but that is one more cleaning tool you'll need to store and clean after use. Instead, this cleaning hack uses items you have already in your closet and pantry—socks and vinegar.

You can use vinegar to clean blinds throughout your house, but it can be especially useful in the kitchen, where you may have grease buildup or greasy fingerprints on the blinds. Vinegar is an inexpensive way to clean away thin layers of grease, though it may not work as well on caked-on grease.

This damp method of cleaning will keep you from sending the dust from the blinds around your room. You also won't be spraying anything into the air.

Before You Begin

While cider vinegar would also work, it may leave pigments behind. It's best to use white or cleaning vinegar for this chore.

If you have athletic socks made of acrylic or polyester, those are made with the microfiber often recommended for cleaning. But well-worn cotton socks or gloves will also work.

Old glove and white socks next to glass bowl with white vinegar materials

The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Old sock or fabric glove

Materials

  • White vinegar

Instructions

  1. Pour Vinegar

    Pour 1 cup of vinegar into a bowl. You can use it undiluted, or you can dilute it one to one with water.

    White vinegar poured from measuring cup into white bowl on wooden surface

    The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

  2. Prepare Sock or Glove

    Place the old sock or glove on your hand, and dip the tip (or fingers) into the bowl of vinegar. Squeeze out any excess.

    Old sock dipped in glass bowl with white vinegar

    The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

  3. Remove Dust

    Run your fingers along both sides of the first slat to remove dust.

    Hand with old glove passing over window blinds to clean

    The Spruce / Nelly Cuanalo

  4. Wear Gloves to Clean Mini Blinds

    For mini blinds, wear gloves and see if you can clean more than one slat at a time through each finger. The spacing may not work for every size of hand and fingers, but if it does, you can save some time.

  5. Rinse and Repeat

    Repeat on the remaining slats, stopping periodically to rinse the dust off of the sock or glove and to apply more vinegar. It's fine to run the glove under a water faucet; you won't significantly dilute the vinegar when you dip it into the bowl of vinegar.

    Tip

    If you worry that vinegar may irritate your fingers, you could wear a rubber glove on your hand and then put the sock or glove over it.

Benefits of Cleaning With Vinegar

  • Dust adheres to the sock or glove rather than being released into the air.
  • Vinegar is very inexpensive.
  • You aren't using any harsh chemicals and vinegar is safe for most surfaces, including wood, plastic, and metal.

Tips and Warnings

  • Avoid over-saturating wood blinds—damp is fine, but wet isn't.
  • Consult the owner's manual that came with your blinds to see if there are any special care instructions.
  • As with any cleaner, you should avoid all contact with the eyes and prolonged contact with the skin.
  • Keep vinegar out of the reach of children.